Pilates has been around for a while ... over 100 years in fact! Due to the brilliance of Joseph Pilates, the Pilates Method has always been and continues today to work on many different levels. It is an excellent and safe way to build core strength, increase flexibility, align the body, improve the neuromuscular connection and improve breathing and balance. No matter what your starting point , or your age.
Historically, the method has been used mainly by dancers, but over 20 years ago Body Control Pilates became aware of the great need to make Pilates available to a far wider population so that all people could access and enjoy the benefits of Pilates.
In 1996, they launched the world's first curriculum-based teacher training course. In 2010, they were the first Pilates training provider to receive approval for a Low Back Pain specialist course in the UK and in 2013, received Ofqual approval to become the only accredited Level 4 Pilates training provider in the UK.
Every client is unique and Pilates fulfils a whole spectrum of ways to work - from group mat-work classes either with or without the small pieces of Pilates equipment through to 1:1 sessions using the larger pieces of studio equipment. such as the reformer or the cadillac.
Whilst still honoring the original works of Joseph Pilates, current research and knowledge such as concepts from the fields of biomechanics and neuroscience are now incorporated into the Pilates repertoire. This adds a richness to the Pilates experience and sets it apart from just a regular workout .....something Joseph Pilates always aspired to.
The reformer was invented by Joseph Pilates and is an extremely clever and versatile piece of equipment. It looks like a bed but has a moving carriage on it which rolls on wheels set within the framework of the bed. At one end of the bed is a gear box and a set of springs which provide different choices of level of resistance to work against. At this end there is also an adjustable foot bar which can be used by the feet, hands or even to sit on !
At the opposite end of the carriage, there is a head rest to enable the head to be supported at many different levels, and shoulder blocks to stop the participant sliding around as the carriage moves. This end also has adjustable poles and long rope straps which can be pulled or pushed with the legs or arms to move the carriage.
There is a vast array of exercises that can be performed on the reformer to lengthen, strengthen, increase flexibility and movement potential as well as working on balance and control. Its versatility is endless! Exercises can be done lying down, standing up, seated, kneeling and when the other reformer equipment is added - for example, the box - even more variations such as lying face down or going upside down !
Due to the huge repertoire of exercises the Reformer can be used for all levels of ability from beginners and rehabilitation to professional athletes.
And it just feels marvellous !
The cadillac is another piece of equipment invented by Joseph Pilates. It also looks like a bed - his inspiration for these pieces of equipment evolved from a hospital bed! There are many elements to this piece of machinery: leg springs, arm springs, a push-through bar, a trapeze type swing and also some furry cuffs/loops to hang from.
Despite it looking like some strange type of torture machine, the cadillac is a wonderful piece of equipment! It can facilitate the breaking down of motions into small sections to restore correct movement patterns in the body, to stretch and lengthen out a stiff body, to strengthen and re-balance the body if asymmetry is apparent.
The cadillac is a virtuous piece of equiptment which can be used throughout the whole spectrum of the requirements of the client - from rehabilitation purposes through to the accomplished athlete and everything in-between.
The Ladder Barrel
The ladder barrel is another wonderful invention for the Pilates studio by Joseph , this time his inspiration being a humble beer keg! Whilst retaining its curved barrel shape, the ladder barrel today is far more sophisticated. It is made up of two parts ,a wooden ladder with rungs made of wood and the barrel itself which is padded and leather covered for comfort. The two components are attached together by a sliding frame base which can be easily adjusted to allow for the different heights and builds of clients.
Take the journey x